I have an extremely strict muslim family - but I don't believe in Islam. Watch

Anonymous #4
#81
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#81
My bf is in the same position as you - he's pakistani muslim. Do you have any siblings? My bf has to choose between his family or his freedom and he's chosen his freedom. Thing is, he was never very close to his parents and they are just waaaaaaaaay too controlling. It was very hard for him. He started breaking free as soon as he went to uni, he goes home once or twice a year and jst tells his parents he has to study so he doesn't have time to leave uni and that he needs the library - and he gets away with it! About 5 years have passed since he frist started distancing himself from them and he's 100% 'free' now, he goes back sometimes but he's just waiting for his dad to disown him so he can leave and not feel guilty about turning his back to his dad.

You need to take this opportunity (uni) and go all out. Enjoy yourself, have fun and try to get a student loan? taht way you won't feel like you owe your parents anything. And if your parents earn below a certain number the government gives you 9k every year (if you live in London - I dont know how that figure varies in Manchester or Southampton) which you dont have to pay back. There are ways for you to be financially independent. My bf is in 60k debt right now but I suppose it's not going to be easy if you leave your family but you will definately be happier. Everyone has a right to be happy! Good luck OP
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MovingOn
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(Original post by mel0n)
Your parents are going pretty far! I'm a girl and I would say mine are strict in comparison to other parents but they're nowhere near as bad as yours! Maybe your parents are mixing culture with religion? I don't think Islam forbids you to have friends, mix with others and certainly, in my opinion, doesn't want you to be unhappy. It seems that maybe they're putting their own personal preferences across as 'religious reasons' or whatever.

Don't let just two people be the reason for you losing faith, imo. Maybe you should look into it further yourself, find out more about the religion and then decide for yourself whether you wish to believe or not.

I agree with this wholeheartedly. I'm not saying you should start following Islam again, you've obviously made an educated decision not to do that, but the way your parents are controlling you and affecting your life so badly definately is not Islamic.

I think the issue here is your parents and their attitudes towards you and expectations of you. I haven't read the whole thread so sorry if this has been covered already but I think you should try and move into the university dorms while you are studying to give you some space from them. I know you don't want to depend on them to pay for your education but it will be a useful tool if you end up deciding to remove yourself from their lives; you will need to support yourself financially.

Don't make any promises or commitments about what you will do after university, and when you do come to tell them about your intentions give them a chance to accept this. I know you say they will react badly but I think it is worth a shot, they are your parents after all.
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Phantom_X
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#83
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I had similar problems, though it was more to do with my external family who kept meddling in my family's livlihoods (as we live with my grandparents). My parents are very liberal when it comes to Islam, in the sense that they see it as personal spirituality (thus they stay away from alcohol etc but they dont impose their beleifs on anyone, nor do they automatically dismiss every religion). I myself studied Islam for about 3 months, and found that many of its rulings were in fact imposed by political totalitarians that used religion to control people, a practice still used today.

You need to go to university and experience the world, but you also need to speak to your parents in a mature way. If they want to act like stubborn children, let them, as long as you have made your diplomatic peace, and made it clear why you are feeling depressed. i have a feeling that Islam isnt the problem as such, but rather, cultural ideas, which i sympathise with. For a long time I felt extremely miserable because of it, and as a result I ended up breaking up with my first gf after 3 weeks simply because I was scared what my family would think. Its your life, and if there is any more abuse, its a wise idea to bring in the authorities, they are taking a much stronger stance on cultural abuse now.

I respect your decision to leave Islam, it is a very confusing religion that unfortunately is taught in a dictator-type way (dosent mean its evil, it means that the religion was abused by the first Ummah and beyond), but I feel this is more the case of you needing to form a bridge between ur parents, than a religious matter.
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MonsterMash
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#84
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Can't all the muslims in this thread that seem to be pressuring the OP to believe in islam realise they are no better than the OP's parents?

OP your decision is exactly that, your decision, and you should stick by what you feel as nobody can go through life living a lie.
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gildartz
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#85
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well if I was in your position I would persuade them to not fund your education and instead take out a student loan. As soon as you go to uni, they won't be able to do much if you confront them about it. Seems like you're a nice person so without this debt to your parents, you should be able to excommunicate yourself more easily.

please, just gtfo of that place asap.
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Accalia
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#86
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I think it might be best not to mention your lack of belief to them (if you do choose to) until you're not living with them and you've paid back the university tuition. Once you get away for uni (assuming you're living in halls and not at home) it should be fairly easy to stay away.
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Sakujo
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#87
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(Original post by Anonymous)
sorry for the long post, really have got a lot on my plate.

My family are extremely strict muslims, completely hardcore. Some of their beliefs are jsut so completely wrong and immoral in my opinion (i'm not saying that islam is wrong or immoral - I don't believe that these particular beliefs have any place in the religion). But i go through everyday of my life pretending i believe the same things, because if i didn't i'd be kicked out and disowned, or beaten or whatever - i have no idea, i just no it would be extremely extremely bad, there's no way they'd ever accept it.

But i don't have the means to leave home and support myself and more importantly, i don't have the courage to do it. I'm starting uni in october, and my parents are working so hard to help finance it since we're not very wealthy. But i don't want them to - i don't want to owe them anything more, i feel so bad about wanting to leave. But they've completely and absolutely controlled my life. I've never had a social life much because i've never been allowed out with friends, I've had to lie jsut to go to the cinema, or even to the park. Most of the friends i do have are distant, and i don't blame them, if i'm never around then i can hardly be a good friend. They don't understand that i can't help it, and that as pathetic as it sounds, they're the only friends i really have.

My muslim friends would completely reject me too - i'd be hated by most of them. I feel like i'm completely stuck leading this life, and i'm so damn miserable. I can't even ask any girls i like out, the most social interaction i've had on my gap year is through facebook, and my parents are constantly screaming and shouting at me, having a complete go at me. They treat me like i'm 5 years old, completely controlling my life, and yet have a go at me for not being mature etc

They've always fought too, and I mean physically as well, which ahs resulted in me completely hating my dad. I once tried to protect my mum - she ended up not talking to me because i showed my dad "disrespect". He's not had a job for years - he runs an islamic bookshop which barely breaks even.

I feel like i'm going crazy. I can't tell anyone this, they either don't understand, think i'm pathetic or would completely hate me for it. I just want to be able to live my own life. They expect me to get married in a few years (i'm 19) and move in and look after them and basically let them carry on dictating my life. I have no intention of doing that - but i can't see any possible way to break free of them, and it's incredibly difficult to just up and leave the people who have provided for you for 19 years.

It's made me a complete wreck - i've become good at hiding my feelings - i have a reputation as someone who's always happy and constantly joking, ironically the guy other people rely on and go to for advice. I tried to tell a friend i was actually miserable the otehr day - he thought i was joking.

my life is a complete mess. i don't even feel like it is my life. I'm constantly lying and manipulating people to hide my true beliefs, and I feel like a complete coward.
This might help.

http://www.myh.org.uk/
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Stressworthy
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#88
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I'd just like to say that I'm in a very similar position to you - gap year and everything (because I couldn't decide what to do and needed time to feel better about missing grades and whatnot). But first and foremost in my parents' minds was always education, and the expectations for me were so high that I just crumbled. That, and the fact that I'm probably not as intelligent as they hoped for me to be... so I didn't get straight As throughout my GCSEs and A levels like they expected me to. I've always been an A/B student, sometimes even lower... I'm not very good at scientific subjects despite medicine being held as the holy grail and coming from a family of scientists. So at least you'll have made them proud by getting in to do medicine... had I been in that position, my parents would have at least acknowledged that, but as it stands I just constantly feel like a massive failure.
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Installation
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#89
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Post uni do a bloody runner.
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lewdav
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#90
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I disagree with many of its rulings. It's not something I'd like to start debating actually, my decision is made. I've lied to myself about it for long enough, about being a "moderate muslim" and only following the rules i agree with, but that wouldn't be right imo.
Buddy my heart goes out to you. It's great to hear that someone is standing up for themselves and what they believe in when it comes to religion. I'm a strong atheist, and it sickens me to hear stories like this. As Richard Dawkins said, there is no such thing as a muslim child, only a child of muslim parents. Religion in many ways has become indoctrination. I'm surprised that your parents would prefer you to suffer in silence in the "name of Allah" even if you don't believe - because surely that demotes the meaning of it for the believers?

Just because you were born into a muslim family does not mean you are a muslim.
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lewdav
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(Original post by MonsterMash)
Can't all the muslims in this thread that seem to be pressuring the OP to believe in islam realise they are no better than the OP's parents?

OP your decision is exactly that, your decision, and you should stick by what you feel as nobody can go through life living a lie.
Too right!
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Anonymous #5
#92
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Why consult an Imam? I've made my decision about Islam - i don't know what religion if any i believe in, and believe me it's a very highly informed decision i've made too, i've been forced to study hadith and the quran pretty much my whole life.

I find it too hard to speak to people about this directly. This is hard enough for me. I've considered speaking to my old teachers, i've even tried before, but i've never told anyone until now. I'm moving quite far, but it won't make a difference.

I had a situation like yours OP.

I was 'born' into the Mormon church, and while my parents were never strict, until I was 13 and asserted once and for all that I just didn't believe the fairy tales being told to me every Sunday (never really did tbh) I was dragged along to church, had to sit through it, had to deal with the smarmy older kids and teenagers who I knew were two faced and full of crap but act all pious when in front of the adults, I'd get in trouble allot (which is funny because I am so far from a trouble-maker it's insane) and generally saw it for what it was (which is hindsight is surprising and I'm quite impressed with myself that at such a young age I could already see fakery and insincerity and stuff for what it was) just a self-serving little social club more about who could scratch each others back then any genuine spirituality (if anyone truly believed it was usually the 'outcast' types anyway who came to church alone, were ignored, and then went home after).


I think you just need to stay strong, and then once you are into uni, move into student accommodation, and from there slowly assert yourself.

I know it must be hard dealing with insufferable people who also happen to be the ones you should love most, your parents, but respect has to go both ways. They can only control your life if you let them.

You may have to one day face the issue of whether you really do have to chose between your own life and philosophy or having your parents highly conditional 'love' and recognition but it hardly sounds worth it to me.

If your parents really do love you they will have to come to terms with it.

Its a tough situation and I cannot truly give you any helpful advice, maybe you could search for other people who face similar situations?


Either way get to uni and live in halls, before you decide anything you really could make use of that distance and freedom to assert yourself, you need space from home and family so you can truly decide what you want.


And its good that you see that your parents interpretation doesn't speak for Islam as a whole. I'm a very liberal sort of guy but even I felt a bit apprehensive when I made my first Muslim friend, I worried about if our different philosophies would clash but he turned out to be a really cool guy and respected my beliefs by not throwing his around and vice versa.

Best of luck.
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Bbeben
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(Original post by lewdav)
Buddy my heart goes out to you. It's great to hear that someone is standing up for themselves and what they believe in when it comes to religion. I'm a strong atheist, and it sickens me to hear stories like this. As Richard Dawkins said, there is no such thing as a muslim child, only a child of muslim parents. Religion in many ways has become indoctrination. I'm surprised that your parents would prefer you to suffer in silence in the "name of Allah" even if you don't believe - because surely that demotes the meaning of it for the believers?

Just because you were born into a muslim family does not mean you are a muslim.
Well said. I don't believe children should have religion FORCED upon them but they should be guided. I was forced to go to church every sunday when I was younger but it wasn't until around university started that I became truly interested in Christianity by my own will.

OP, if you don't believe in what Islam teaches you then give it up. Do not let others including your parents dictate what you should be. The only person we belong to is God and whatever we choose He will accept. Whether you believe in God or not it's good you come to conclusions about religion by yourself.

Cut contact from your parents if they cannot accept you. Times may be hard ahead but things can only get better and you'll learn many things about yourself and life.
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Waqar Y
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(Original post by xxAFFxx)
Don't most asians do that. I'm pakistani muslim and im really lucky that my parents are not strict, but my other muslim friends are not so lucky. Its all culture not religion - these stupid asians just use religion to cover it.
(Y)
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xxAFFxx
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(Original post by Waqar Y)
(Y)
Oh i have no idea what that means i'm familiar with interent slang lol.

i see you're a Brummie as well. So am i. what part can i ask?
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Straz
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allah akbar alalalalalalalalalalalalalalalal alalalalalalalalalalalalalalalal alalalala
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User414413
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(Original post by Straz)
allah akbar alalalalalalalalalalalalalalalal alalalalalalalalalalalalalalalal alalalala
Your point is?
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Care-Free
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#98
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thats awful
im sure in uni you'll meet lots of people who wont expect anything so extreme from you and you can really be yourself without your parents restrictions, on the bright side your not going to live with your parents your whole life and once you get the chande you can move away,not so far that you cut contact because like you said it would seem terribly harsh to abandonn those who raised you (even if it was unfair) and you might be able to tell them without the fear of having them disown you, and if they did disown you for having your own views then really...they're not the kind of people you want in your life, family is mean to be there through thick and thin.

i really hope things work out for you
good luck
x
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Charzhino
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#99
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It could be worse you could be gay
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fexysucker
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#100
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(Original post by xxAFFxx)
Oh i have no idea what that means i'm familiar with interent slang lol.

i see you're a Brummie as well. So am i. what part can i ask?
its the code for the thumbs up emoticon on MSN.
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